A popular question many people ask is, “What does yoga have to do with Hinduism?” The answer is very simple.
Yoga is a deep science revealed by Mahadeva Himself in the Agamas. It is not just moving your arms and legs! Yoga is deeply rooted in Hinduism, sourced in Hinduism, and includes all aspects of Hinduism. It is not a “spiritual” practice alone, but is a sacred Hindu ritual. Any yoga teachers, gurus who promote yoga as a mere spiritual practice are diluting and misrepresenting yoga, and pose danger to the ones practicing it.
Anyone who is willing to accept the rituals as a part of yoga, is free to do yoga. But that does not make yoga the property of those people. Yoga has its roots in Hinduism, in the science of enlightenment, and is revealed to the world for that purpose. Fitness may be a side effect of yoga, but it is not the end goal of yoga. Manifesting a you want, and living jeevan mukti, living in the space of Oneness with the Whole is the purpose of yoga.
What is Wrong with “Beer Yoga”?
Beer yoga, chicken yoga are not only NOT yoga, they are dangerous, and unscientific. They do damage to those who practice it. The people teaching these practices need to be accountable for what they are teaching. Consuming alcohol while doing yoga causes serious damages to your system, including psychological effects.
The yoga teachers who have not made any effort to understand the roots of yoga or the science of yoga are the most ill qualified to teach it, but the ones at the forefront of making these practices popular.
It is important for every yoga practitioner & teacher to understand that yoga is a science to realize, experience bliss and divinity. It is divinity expressing through you, not you trying to reach divinity. You need to set the sankalpa, chant the mantras, do the pranayama & achamaneeyam, mudras and invoke Bhagwan before doing asanas.
Without these, just moving arms and legs is not called as “yoga.” They can be called as pilates or other fitness regimes. But it should not be called as yoga.